Some of the best places to visit are quiet, quaint towns with beautiful scenery and a good back story. The city of Marietta is at the heart of Cobb County, Georgia, less than 20 miles from Atlanta. It may not be as well-known as its neighboring city, but it has a special Southern charm that you can’t find in urban communities. Marietta, GA has an abundance of history and culture to offer visitors who are interested in travel, leisure, and learning.
Fresh Air and Local Marietta History
Kennesaw Mountain National Battlefield Park is arguably the most popular historical site in Marietta. It is home to many of Marietta’s legends and the Kennesaw Mountain itself, a battleground during the American Civil War. The battle on Kennesaw Mountain was just one in a series fought during the Atlanta Campaign (1864). The Visitor Center and Museum features a live action documentary, various Civil War artifacts, and exhibits specific to local history.
If you’re lucky, you might even catch a free demonstration of what life is like as a Civil War solider by a living historian. You can plan your trip ahead of time by visiting the calendar on the National Park Service’s website.
When you’ve soaked up all the information you can, head over to the interpretative trails for some hiking, running, and sightseeing. The trails on Kennesaw Mountain go on for miles, each giving their own perspective of the Marietta’s natural beauty. You can even stop to enjoy a view of the Atlanta city skyline when you reach the top.
Be sure to visit Sope Creek Ruins during one of your walking sessions. These old industrial ruins belonged to a paper mill during the Civil War era that were operated by Marietta Paper Mills. The ruins are just one feature of Sope Creek Park, which offers miles of wilderness and scenic trails. It’s also not too far from Sweetwater Creek State Park, where parts of The Hunger Games: Mockingjay were filmed.
History, Education and Folklore of Marietta
Once you’ve checked off Kennesaw Mountain National Battlefield Park, move on to the galleries and exhibits in the Marietta Museum of History. The building itself has a fascinating story. It began as a cotton warehouse in 1845 and became the Fletcher House Hotel just ten years later. It was a building that had many purposes – not all of which were pleasant – leading to the development of several ghost stories. If you’re not too spooked to go, it is packed with information and artifacts that tell Marietta’s story. It is both an engaging and educational experience for visitors of all ages.
If haunted buildings and ghost stories are right up your alley, the Marietta Confederate Cemetery is another landmark you’ll want to hit. This historical marker is a special place to reflect on the lives that were sacrificed during the Atlanta campaign. One section of the cemetery features the flag of each state who lost men, many of which remain unknown, during these battles.
Marietta is abundant in character and charm, a feature you won’t always find in urban scenes. Despite its recent growth and modernization, the local government and residents work hard to preserve the city’s heritage. Take advantage of this historic, close-knit community the next time you’re in town – they are abundant in stories and experiences.